Do you desire to know your house’s exact age but don’t know how to go about it? Worry not! There are simple ways to do this. To know the age you can look at the deed, check the architectural properties and styles, the surroundings, and carry out some historical investigations. A house age impacts greatly on its value as well as how desirable it looks to a buyer.
A house whose features are outdated has a lower value than one with new features in the same locality.
How To Find Out When Your House Was Built
You can find out how old your house is and the exact year it was built using the following simple methods:
Checking The Deeds
You can visit the land registry office in your area and ask for the deeds. The title deeds (registers) have information on the historical ownership of every piece of land. It is possible to see when the property was transferred to the first owner by the developer. You will also receive a copy of the document from the conveyance once you purchase a property.
If you want to know the age of a property before buying it, you can get the title register from your mortgage broker, estate agent, or property inspectors. You can also search online for your home’s title register to know when it was first registered.
Looking At The Architectural Properties And Styles
Architectural designs keep changing over time, and it is possible to know the year or period a home was built by looking at its style. You can know the designs for different years by consulting a professional architectural investigator. You may also be lucky to find a stone which displays the date when a house was built.
The following UK styles can help you to know the age of the home;
You can easily recognize these homes from their unique British design. These houses were common between the years 1485 and 1603. While the homes come in different sizes and shapes, they have common unique features such as;
1. Thatched or tiled roofs that are generally steep
2. Casement windows with small panes
3. Tall chimneys with enclosed fireplaces
4. White or pale-coloured paint
5. Black or dark-brown painted, exposed timber frames
These glorious types of homes were popular in the period between 1714 and 1820. They were a common attraction to wealthy people. These properties have some unique features that include;
1. Have at least three storeys
2. Rectangular windows that are centrally placed and usually sashed
3. Bond brick facades that are smooth-rendered and running
4. Huge doors and entrances
5. Spacious bedrooms and large interiors
6. Reception rooms that are large and have fireplaces
7. Front iron-cast railings and high ceilings
8. Less-spacious rooms and small windows with lower ceilings on the upper floors
9. Basements that were generally used for storing coal and as kitchen
Stuart style of building was generally influenced by European design and was popular from 1603 to 1714. These homes were constructed from more long-lasting bricks and stones instead of timber. Some of the major features of these houses include;
1. Symmetrical layouts
2. Beautifully plastered, spacious rooms with high ceilings
3. Spacious living rooms and wide fireplaces
4. A flat front with bare bricks that don’t match
5. Larger homes also had separate servant quarters that currently serve as utility rooms
6. Some houses have external cornicing
During Queen Victoria’s reign, there was unprecedented growth in the construction of houses. This surge was particularly experienced on the onset of the industrial revolution as financing became more accessible. The homes were common around 1837 to 1900, and they varied in sizes. Most of the houses were built in rows on narrow streets, and they lacked front gardens. It is also not unusual to find back-to-back homes with small or no gardens at all.
Other noticeable features of Victorian homes include;
1. Asymmetrical designs with high ceilings
2. Red-coloured brickwork and huge bay windows
3. Colourful tiling that is geometrical for bigger homes
4. Internal and external coving that is ornate
5. Wooden plank floors, patterned gypsum plaster, and stained glass styles
6. Dado rails that run across the house
7. For Victorian homes, there are different dates for various parts of the property.
Modern Minimalist Houses
Due to the demand for higher environmental standards, modern homes have adopted unique features. Modern minimalist houses have features such as;
1. Modern triple-glazed technology and solar panels
2. Large glass walls and windows
3. Exposed steelwork, open-plan layouts, and energy-efficient standards
4. Clean finishes that are airy with little clutter and simple designs
5. Solar panels and heat loss control including heat exchangers
Looking At The Surroundings Of The Home
You may also look at the surroundings of your home to know its year of construction. This method works well in less urbanized areas where building designs are more uniform. Some homes were built for specific purposes. For example, if your town has an industrial past, the homes could be identical to others and built-in neat rows. Such houses are for factory workers or employees of a local business. They were built during the industrial revolution.
Some buildings will have been repurposed from office blocks, hospitals, factories, mills, or mansions to serve as flats in some surroundings. You will, however, find some features of the old structures that were preserved for interest. You can also know their original use by looking at nearby properties.
You may get necessary information about your home from neighbours, especially those who own pubs and hotels. Individuals who have a good grasp of the happenings in the area could also be resourceful in giving information about your home’s age.
Other Historical Findings
Other historical investigations could also help you establish when your home was built. The findings include;
1. Historical editions of ordnance survey maps
2. Old maps that contain a collection of official maps from different historical periods
3. Previous insurance and mortgage documents
4. National Archives which could contain the history of your property
How To Tell If A House Is Built Well
Many factors help to determine if your house is built well or not. You can check the following;
1. Check if the walls are at a right angle with the floor and ceiling and that the surface of the wall is plain
2. Walls should not have cracks
3. Proper ventilation and perfect natural lighting in all corners
4. Bathrooms need to be on the house’s exterior and not in the middle to avoid bad odour from the drain going back into the house
5. No plumbing problems or entry points for insects and other annoying creatures
6. Electrical points and switchboards are in perfect locations, placements, and heights
7. Bathroom tiles need to have good finishings that are not rough to prevent dust particles from getting trapped inside. The bathroom tiles need not be too bright as this will get dirty quickly
How To Find Out When Your House Was Built In Australia
Resources about each house may vary due to location, availability, and organization in different states. However, you can use the following methods to research on when your house was built;
1. Using council rate records
2. Street directories
3. Check from register office records
4. Searching online from different websites that show information on individual states
5. Searching for your house photos and historical articles from Trove
The year a house was built plays a great role in determining its value. You can use different methods to know the exact age of your house among them looking at the records from your local land offices. You can also look at the different structural designs that are specific for different eras and look at the neighbourhood.